Foreign Office investigates reports that 3 British hostages have been released

The Foreign Office said Friday it is investigating reports that three British hostages taken in Gaza on Wednesday have been released.

A spokesman said the reports, carried by the British Broadcasting Corp., that British aid worker Kate Burton and her parents had been released, were as yet unconfirmed. Britain's Sky Television, citing a source in Gaza, also reported the three had been freed.

BBC correspondent Alan Johnston said reports suggested that the three had been released in the town of Rafah near the Palestinian border with Egypt.

Ihtisham Hibatullah from the Muslim Association of &to=' target=_blank>Britain said Friday night his colleagues "have been speaking to people in Gaza and they said they have information that a firm link of communication has been established with the kidnappers and they have agreed to release the hostages."

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